Deceased estates fees and charges
The Public Trustee charges a fee-for-service to handle deceased estates. This is based on the number and type of assets and liabilities, and the number of beneficiaries. We do not charge a percentage commission. We will give you an estimate of our fee when we first meet and a final fee quote when we have full details of all assets and liabilities.
What our fees cover
Our fee covers the following steps in administering an estate:
- confirming the will is valid
- obtaining administration (probate) in the estate
- locating and notifying the beneficiaries
- consulting with beneficiaries and keeping them informed of progress
- verifying and protecting the assets
- arranging asset valuations and inventories (if required)
- confirming or arranging insurance
- collecting or transferring assets
- determining debts and liabilities
- paying any debts and claims
- managing the accounts, including preparing and lodging tax returns and other financial statements
- distributing the estate to the beneficiaries.
If there are activities that are outside the standard administration—such as preparing or reconstructing records, matters involving a business or partnership, or any legal action—we charge an hourly rate to resolve these issues. We will tell you if any of these situations arise.
Other costs that may be paid from the estate include:
- professional fees of auctioneers, real estate agents, tax agents, or valuers
- transfer fees for property title or motor vehicle registration
- filing fees to the Supreme Court
- out-of-pocket expenses such as photocopying, postage and phone calls.
Charges depend on the nature of the trust and what we are required to do. There are fees for managing the assets and investments, and fees for professional services such as taxation. We will calculate and explain these fees before we set up the trust.